This is the week people are getting revved up preparing to buy presents. Even before Thanksgiving Day is over, stores are opening their doors for the onslaught of gigantic volumes of people “terrorizing” their stores to purchase treasured items with limited supplies and to find “great deals”. Emotions will be at fever pitch because of long lines and folks jockeying to break in lines without waiting for their turn. This time of the year has become all about selfish consumption. Television newscasts will feature video clips of people acting like idiots…the more maniacal the better. We are focused on “presents” rather than the original purpose of these “Holydays”, which was to remember and rejoice His “presence” in their lives.
Take a few minutes to read then hopefully heed God’s Word about His desire for us to practice His “presence”. The purpose of mankind in the eyes of God was to become a creature who would fellowship and commune with Him. Practicing His “presence” creates an intimacy which is so special to God. I am not talking about the perverted view of intimacy in our world but building “oneness, closeness, familiarity, comfort, confidentiality, warmth, trust, attachment and rapport…to know and be known.” Let’s see how precious this is to God and how strengthening and “sweet” this is to us:
- Psalm 105:4, Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!
- Psalm 21:6, For you make him most blessed forever; you make him glad with the joy of your presence.
- Psalm 16:11, You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
- Psalm 9:3, When my enemies turn back, they stumble and perish before your presence. In His presence we are protected.
- Psalm 95:2, Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! God appreciates our thanksgiving and praise.
- Psalm 41:12, But you have upheld me because of my integrity, and set me in your presence forever. A person of integrity is cherished by God.
- Psalm 46:10, Be still, and know that I am God.
- Psalm 37:7, Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him…
- Exodus 24:12, The Lord said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain and wait there, that I may give you the tablets of stone, with the law and the commandment, which I have written for their instruction.” God invited Moses into His presence and then said wait on me. From this came the 10 Commandments. Willing to wait on Him is huge in your relationship with Him as you learn to practice His presence.
Let me throw out a challenge which will become a huge blessing to each of us. Learn to practice His presence. Be patient, learn to wait on Him, and God will be present. Don’t prioritize “presents” this Holyday Season. Focus on His presence.